Friday, March 23, 2012

Is there a cure for there being no cure?

So like a lot of people (and why is it always really frickin' bright people?) I've been on an antidepressant for the last year or so. It's one I was on over a decade ago, for the same symptoms: mini-mania, mood swings; depression; what Wikipedia calls "Bipolar II." (I imagine the previews: "If you liked Bipolar I, you'll LOVE Bipolar II!!!"  "Bipolar II: Son of Bipolar" "Bipolar II: Journey to Hell."

You get the picture.

The eccentricities were not life-impeding. I'm rather impulsively verbal, my passions flare quickly, and my mind sometimes races in ways I'd rather it not. I was somewhat exhausting, but I was generally happy. What sent me from somewhat eccentric to suddenly welling up with tears in public was the same thing, and it pisses me off to no end, because it's the most trite scenario you can imagine.

Each time, what brought me to the point of needing meds was a broken heart. No, not just a broken heart; the crushing disappointment that comes after letting my guard down and my hopes up. As you can guess, I don't let this happen often.

I should explain that my kind of broken has all kinds of things to do with (again) more trite things: father issues, rejection, lots and lots of anger.

So I am a weird combination of very self-protective and very vulnerable. Connected, obviously. In my younger days, I craved love, and I attracted exactly the kind of guy that a girl with low self-esteem does: the kind who treats her like crap, takes her for granted, and perpetuates the schizophrenia where she is enraged at being treated so badly, and also believes that she somehow deserves it. And I spiraled into depression.

I've become healthy enough to pretty much say "fuck off" to jerks, but I don't manage gray areas well. So in a game where the stakes are so high, I tend to go for just not playing, and on the rare occasions I do, I cut and run the minute a minor chord starts playing in the soundtrack. It's not cowardice, it's well-learned self-preservation.

But the same thing has happened on this medication that happened last time: my memory has gone to crap. I walked into the bathroom last night and was surprised to see the tub full, forgetting that I'd filled it. I went to use the bathroom, then walked to the kitchen and began washing dishes before remembering I'd got up in the middle of doing my taxes.

I wake up and am never positive what day it is.

This is obviously not good. Last time, I went off the meds and I was OK. Still eccentric, but not emotionally self-destructive. So I'm going to try it again, with my doctor's guidance. Part of me is looking forward to having a clearer brain, more energy, possibly taking off the weight I put on while on the drug. Another part of me is simply terrified. For someone who takes rejection hard, my demon is anxiety over becoming crazy and unlovable. That I'll ditch the meds to get myself back, only to find that who I am is socially unacceptable.

Still, I have to try. I'm sick of the sludge that oozes through my head. Of falling asleep.

And now I have to go. Someone has apparently filled the tub again, so I guess I might as well take a bath.


karen said...

Oh Joy, I know about what you speak. I am just pondering my drug of choice: therapy. I'm tired of feeling angry, disappointed in and devastated by people I can't avoid: parents, inlaws, my kids' teachers ... you get the picture. And I'd like to sort out how I could do things differently to rock the boat less. Trouble is, I'm thinking it is not possible, that either I'm made wrong or they are, that it is a stupid crazy world of people who do not feel the need to get along with others, mixed with those of us who feel a deep need to get along. And to make sense.

Ugh, I don't know. I've never really done drugs, illegal or not. I mean, over-the-counter pain killers don't even work for me, and the dangers of me having very wrong reactions to drugs and getting myself into more troubles, not less, are very real.

I wish you well on this.

And um, ya. This:
"That I'll ditch the meds to get myself back, only to find that who I am is socially unacceptable."

Can you just move here already and be my bff? I need you. Sven can get someone else.

JC said...

Can we got to cafes and laugh too loud and make the world drunk on our unselfconscious glee? Then yes!

Sven may steal me, though, and you know how those Germans hold a grudge. We can have a secret BFF affair. :-)

JC said...

"that it is a stupid crazy world of people who do not feel the need to get along with others, mixed with those of us who feel a deep need to get along. And to make sense."

Bingo. As always, Karen, you. Nailed. It. And a need for people to understand that it takes a certain commitment to seeing the good in people, a determination to connect.